Sunday, February 07, 2016

Links & Reviews

- Andrew Shannon, 51, has gone on trial for the unlawful possession of books stolen from Carton House in County Kildare, Ireland. The books were found to be missing after being put in storage during renovations on the house. Shannon, who maintained that he had purchased the books, was found guilty on Tuesday and will be sentenced in April. Shannon was already in jail, serving time for vandalizing a valuable Monet painting in 2012; in 2011 he was convicted of handling stolen property involving a number of stolen maps.

- The Independent reports that a French court is struggling to find a single buyer for the massive collection of books and manuscripts owned by the Aristophil Group. See the call for buyers.

- Carolyn Kellogg covers the Huntington Library's acquisition of Paul Theroux's papers for the LATimes.

- Writing for Slate, Lydia Pyne has a very interesting piece on the Snead & Company bookshelves that populated many an American library for much of the twentieth century.

- The J. Paul Getty Museum has acquired the Livre des fais de Jacques de Lalaing, a 16th-century secular illuminated manuscript.

- The records of the Bibliographical Society of America have been processed and are now available for research at the Grolier Club.

- Newly-launched, French Renaissance Paleography, featuring more than 100 manuscripts along with transcription tools, &c.

- Lots of coverage this week in the British media about Lady Isabella Hertford's use of birds clipped from Audubon's Birds of America to augment her drawing room wallpaper (note: this happened soon after the book was published, not recently).

- The University of Toronto Scarborough has purchased a collection of more than 10,000 Chinese restaurant menus.

- A 19th-century library record has been returned to Scotland's Innerpeffray Library after being found tucked into a secondhand book.

- The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that a woman filing for bankruptcy can keep her first edition Book of Mormon and will not be required to sell it to pay creditors. Anna Robinson says she found the book while cleaning a library storage area in 2003, and that the director told her she could keep whatever books she found. [Shakes head incredulously].

- February's Rare Book Monthly is out, including a report on the lawsuit over books stolen from NYPL, a recap of the Pirie sale, and more.

- From Daniel Grant in the Observer, "The Rarefied World of Book Collecting Is Not a Dying Art."

- Reading Sheffield launched recently: it's a collection of interviews with readers born between 1919 and 1942, with much background and context. I encourage a look-round.

- J.L. Bell covers the lawsuit over the Franklin & Hall manuscript over at Boston 1775.

- Sarah Lyall profiles London bookshop Heywood Hill for the NYTimes' T Magazine.

- At Echoes from the Vault, Carina Müller writes about cataloging the John Sturgeon Mackay's collection of mathematical books.


- "Blooks: The Art of Books That Aren't" (Grolier Club exhibition); reviews by Jennifer Schuessler in the NYTimes and Rebecca Rego Barry in the Guardian.

- Iain Pears' Arcadia; review by Steve Donoghue in the WaPo.

- Rebecca Rego Barry's Rare Books Uncovered; review by Bill Ruehlmann in the Virginian-Pilot.

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